By: Radha McLean
You’re Not Imagining It
Study Shows Internal Medicine Doctors Have Negative Attitude Toward Type 2 Diabetes
Doctors specializing in internal medicine, including attending physicians and those in training, are less likely than primary care doctors to accept the seriousness of type 2 diabetes, value the need for good glucose control or believe that people with the disease need special training in diabetes self-care. These findings held regardless of the doctors’ age, gender or level of training.
Older physicians, however, “were more likely to appreciate the need for special training in teaching, counseling, and behavior change techniques for health care professionals who care for patients with diabetes,” the study notes.
Citing “certain negative attitudes toward type 2 diabetes” on the part of the internists, the researchers write that “there is a need for a change in the attitudes of internal medicine physicians toward type 2 diabetes. Of particular importance is the need for physicians to acknowledge patient autonomy in diabetes self-management. Negative attitudes toward patient autonomy can impede patient-physician collaboration, which is particularly essential in the management of type 2 diabetes.”
– Southern Medical Journal, January 2002